Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Interview with Grace Bridges

Today we are interviewing author Grace Bridges. Her most recent novel is, Faith Awakened.

Grace Bridges is a sci-fi author (Faith Awakened, 2007, and Legendary Space Pilgrims, coming in 2009) and owner of Splashdown Books, an independent publisher of inspirational sci-fi and fantasy. She's a Kiwi of Irish descent living in beautiful New Zealand, and a chocaholic cat-lovin' Trekkie, Jesus freak, web designer, and all-round DIY gal who also takes care of the Lost Genre Guild blog.

Grace took a few minutes to talk about publishing from a writer's perspective with Writing Career Coach.

Writing Career Coach: What are some ways you prepared to market your book before you were published

Grace Bridges: I joined a lot of social networks online, of all types: mailing lists for authors and readers, sci-fi fan groups, Shoutlife, Facebook, Myspace, Twitter and more, and even started one of my own where readers can get updates and previews if they sign up: www.gracebridges.com/signup. I also created a series of video trailers to promote the book, and released them during the run-up to publication, to build the buzz. You can view the first one at http://www.socuteurl.com/jiffyfuzzledo - and look for the Playlist on the right for the others.
WCC: Tell us about your book.GB: Which one? LOL. Probably the one that's out as opposed to the five or six that wrestle within my hard drive and my head. FAITH AWAKENED was first published in 2007 and is now re-issued in a new edition from my own company, Splashdown Books.

A deadly plague with a political greed background destroys most of Earth's population, leaving just a handful of genetically immune survivors. When they realise their immunity is not permanent due to mutations in the virus, they decide to activate a prototype cryogenic system enabling the user to live on in virtual reality while in hygienically isolated suspended animation.

But after flicking the switch, the supposed virtual reality feels a lot more real than the supposed real life. Which one is real, and which one is true? Could there be something supernatural behind this? And how come Mariah's virtual stasis keeps on crashing?
You can find more about this book at http://www.faithawakened.com/.

WCC: How do you plan and write your book?

GB: I use a number of steps from Randy Ingermanson's Snowflake Method, available here: http://www.advancedfictionwriting.com/art/snowflake.php - namely, steps 1 (one-sentence summary), 2 (one-paragraph summary), 4 (five-paragraph summary) and 6 (four page summary), and then a scene list which only vaguely resembles step 8, containing one-sentence descriptions of what must be accomplished in each scene. However, these descriptions are still pretty vague.

For example, in my WIP - "Godspeed," the sequel to Faith Awakened, I'm currently working on a scene I described in planning as "Dave breaks Naomi out of jail." But the details of exactly how he did that - getting past the guards through a maintenance corridor, blowing a hole in the cell wall, getting caught while she escapes, then she sneaks around behind and rescues him again - all that was purely SOTP invention, and that's a really fun part of writing that I wouldn't want to be without. Also, my characterisations tend to be SOTP also, deepening and developing as I delve further into the story.

WCC: Do you have a tip for finding and working with an agent?

GB: Actually I don't believe in agents. No offense to those wonderful people who do that work and those who work with them - but it just doesn't work in my genre. Science fiction and fantasy is notoriously difficult to get an agent for, especially for newbies. That's why I founded my publishing company Splashdown Books, to pick up wonderful new authors who wouldn't get a chance by traditional means. We don't even have submission guidelines - I call them Acceptance Guidelines, which you can find on the Authors page at http://www.splashdownbooks.com/. You see, I don't take submissions at all - rather, I interact with other authors in critique groups, swapping edits, and if I find something I want to publish, I will approach the author. I grant you it's not the usual manner of proceeding for a publisher, but it allows me to gauge their editing skills and consider publication without having the author on tenterhooks waiting to hear what I decide, and without having to reject anyone directly.

WCC: What do you do other than writing? How do you maintain balance?

GB: I'm a freelance translator, so that's very flexible and irregular work. Otherwise I'm kept busy doing things for Splashdown Books - I love all the periphery of publishing, such as graphic design, interior typesetting, filming book trailers, planning blog tours, etc. All these things provide the perfect balance to offset the mental intensity of the writing itself. I'm also a hobby photographer and am learning to play the bodhran (Irish hand drum).

Read more of Grace’s interview here at Examiner.com

Leave a comment on this posting and you could win a copy of Faith Awakened The drawing will take place on Nov. 23, 2009. This give away is for US residents only. There is no fee to enter.

The Writing Career Coach blog is moving! In order to offer you more services and a central location for all information I am moving this blog to our main website: http://www.writingcareercoach.com/ There you will find the blog, information on my speaking topics, FREE articles to help you with your writing and more.

Tiffany Colter is a writer, speaker and writing career coach who works with beginner to published writers. She can be reached through her website at http://www.writingcareercoach.com/
Tiffany is a speaker and teacher. Find out about available topics for your group’s next event.
Tiffany is a National Examiner. Read her articles here.
Learn more about Tiffany’s Marketing techniques on her main blog.
Common-sense money management is free at The Balanced Life website.
Read Tiffany’s award winning manuscript “A Face in the Shadow” on her fiction blog.
She writes a blog for the Christian writer Tuesdays at Writer’s Rest.


Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Grace & Tiffany -

Great interview!

This book sounds fascinating. You and Kerry Nietz are going to convert me into a fan of the genre yet.

I'd love to win your book. Please enter me.

susanjreinhardt (at) gmail (dot) com

Susan :)

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